AP Biology: Relating Contemporary Non-Fiction to Biological Themes
Throughout the year we have discussed and referred to 8 major themes in biology. These themes include:
- Science as a Process: Science is a way of knowing. It involves a discovery process that involves collecting and analyzing data and forming conclusions.
- Energy Transfer: All living organisms are active because of their abilities to link energy reactions to the biochemical that take place within their cells.
- Continuity and Change: All species maintain themselves from generation to generation using the same genetic code. However, there are genetic mechanisms that lead to change over time, or evolution.
- Relationship of Structure to Function
- Interdependence in Nature
- Science, Technology, and Society: This theme includes scientific research leading to technological advances that have positive and or negative impacts upon society as a whole; it also includes human impact on the environment.
For this project you must choose and read one of the following books:
Prodigal Summer- Barbara Kingsolver (Fiction)
Poisonwood Bible- Barbara Kingsolver (Fiction)
Animal, Vegetable, Mineral- Barbara Kingsolver (Non-fiction; biographical)
The Coming Plague- Laurie Garrett (Non-fiction)
I suggest beginning to read your book now if you haven’t already. As you read, mark pages with post-it notes indicating that there is an example of a biological them on that page. When possible, indicate which theme by writing on the post-it. This will speed up the writing process later. You must find 20 examples of biological themes in the book. You must find at least three in the each quarter of the book but a total of 20 altogether.(Five points will be deducted for every example you are missing from each quarter of the book, even if you find 20) You must find at least 6 out of the 8 themes. (5 points will be deducted per theme for less than 6)
Write a brief paper (2-4 pages) summarizing your collection of examples of biological themes found throughout the book. For each example you must:
- State the theme
- Discuss the material from the novel and EXPLAIN how it relates to the biological theme
- Cite the page in parentheses at the end of the discussion
The format of the paper is up to you. Some students may choose to discuss the themes in chronological order and others may choose to discuss them by theme. You will be graded on the number of examples you found, whether or not your examples are actual examples of the theme you suggest, and the quality of the explanation you give supporting the relationship of your example to the theme. Each example can earn up to 5 points. The table below will be used for grading purposes. Please fill out column one, but leave the rest of the table blank.